Indicator methodology - Supplying seed
The supplying seed indicator measures laws and regulations that support the timely release of seed for use by domestic farmers. This indicator includes: (a) the time it takes to register a new variety, (b) the cost of registering a new variety, and (c) nine legal data points assessing good practices that promote transparency and efficiency of variety release processes. For each legal data point, a score of 1 is assigned if the answer is “yes,” and a score of 0 is assigned if the answer is “no.” The aggregate indicator is a simple average of the scores of its three components, with higher values indicating better support for farmers to access high-quality seed.
|a) Time to register a new cereal variety||Calendar days|
|b) Cost to register a new cereal variety||Percent of income per capita|
|c) Quality of seed regulation index||Sum of sub-questions|
If a variety is already registered in another country, does the law allow it to be automatically approved for commercialization?
Are distinctiveness, uniformity and stability (DUS) testing data from foreign authorities accepted?
In practice, does the variety release committee (VRC) meet on demand or at least once per growing season?
Is there a catalogue listing registered varieties?
Is the variety catalogue updated at least once per growing season?
Can private seed companies or third parties produce "early generation seed" from public varieties?
Can private seed companies or third parties (for example, private laboratories) certify seed?
Does the national seed authority publish a fee schedule for seed certification costs?
Does the law prescribe the procedural requirements to access plant genetic materials in your country?
Information for the supplying seed indicator is collected through a questionnaire administered to seed companies, national seed associations, government authorities and academics. The information collected is validated through detailed desk reviews of the relevant laws and regulations in each country.
The supplying seed indicator relies on several assumptions about the cereal variety, namely:
- It is a maize variety developed by the private sector and is being registered for the first time in the entire country. In countries where maize is not produced, another type of cereals that are produced is assumed as an alternative.
- It has not been registered in any other country.
Time is recorded in calendar days and captures the median duration of each procedure. The time span for each procedure starts with the first filing of the registration application and ends with the last procedure required to release the variety on the market, which is often the listing in the national catalogue or its publication in the official gazette. Tests that the applicant performs prior to completing an application are excluded. The minimum time for each procedure is one day. Although procedures may take place simultaneously, they cannot start on the same day (that is, simultaneous procedures start on consecutive days). The time spans for the distinctiveness, uniformity and stability (DUS) testing and value for cultivation and use (VCU) testing are standardized according to the number of cropping seasons in a given country, and the minimum number of seasons during which each test must be performed.
For countries with one cropping season per year:
- If one season of testing is required for registration, the corresponding time span is 182 days.
- If two seasons of testing are required for registration, the corresponding time span is 547 days.
For countries with two cropping seasons per year:
- If one season of testing is required for registration, the corresponding time span is 135 days.
- If two seasons of testing are required for registration, the corresponding time span is 275 days.
Only official costs are recorded, including any applicable fees and taxes. In the absence of official fee schedules, the estimates provided by expert respondents are recorded and the median of the responses is taken. Professional fees (for example, notary fees) are only included if the applicant is required to use such services. All costs are recorded as percent of income per capita (using current US dollars).
Countries with no practice or no score
A country is considered “no practice” on the time and cost components if either no seed variety was registered by the private sector between July 1, 2016 and June 30, 2018, or if seed registration legislation is not yet in force or implemented. A score of 0 is recorded if a variety registration is not done in practice. Countries where government oversight of seed performance trials is not instituted but where the industry or third parties successfully undertake this function (for example, Australia, United States) are not scored.